How Estonia Became the Electric Car Capital of the World

Brian Merchant describes the key initiatives intended to make the ex-Soviet nation "the best place in the world to buy and drive an electric car."
March 3, 2013, 5am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email Comments

As Merchant describes, there are two key elements of Estonia’s Electric e-Mobility plan (ELMO): the strategic construction of 165 EV fast-charging stations and subsidies that reduce the price of vehicles by half.

"Electric cars still only number in the hundreds in Estonia, but this is a comprehensive and unabashed push to transform a deeply entrenched transportation paradigm: This is how a nation paves the way for electric cars, if it’s so inclined," says Merchant.

"It’s still not a perfect plan if the aim is to reduce carbon emissions, as officials claim—Estonia is one of the few countries in the world that still gets its electricity from oil shale, a high-carbon energy source if there ever was one. Still, the EV infrastructure will remain in place as the nation transitions to cleaner sources."

Share Tweet LinkedIn Email